DEVELOPING STORY: Kenya Boat Sinks 80 New Year’s Travellers

viagra sale geneva; font-size: small;”>Many more were feared missing after a boat carrying dozens of passengers hit another vessel and capsized off on Sunday evening, the Kenya Red Cross said.

Nelly Muluka-Oluoch, a Kenya Red Cross spokeswoman, said 20 survivors had been found so far and the boat may have been carrying up to 80 passengers.

She said rescue teams were searching for more survivors into the night.

Reuters reports the boat was taking people from Lamu Island to the nearby mainland when it hit the other vessel.

A Lamu resident at the hospital on Lamu Island said 13 passengers, including five children, had been admitted for treatment after being pulled from the water.

He said the small boats typically take up to about 50 passengers from the island to the mainland, but survivors said the boat was overloaded with people and baggage.

Officials in Lamu said they were still trying to determine the exact number of passengers and how many people had managed to make it to shore but did not yet have precise figures.

Kenyans flock to the Indian Ocean coast over Christmas and New Year for holidays and Lamu is a popular tourist destination.


Muluka-Oluoch said Red Cross teams in Lamu also said the small boat was overloaded.

“The boat was carrying 80 people. So far seven bodies have been taken to the mortuary and there are 20 survivors so far,” she said.

Overloading was blamed for another boat disaster off the Indian Ocean coast in neighbouring Tanzania in September. More than 200 people died when the MV Spice Islander sank as it sailed from Zanzibar to Pemba Island.

08:37am: Kenya Boat Sinks 80 New Year’s Travellers

Red Cross Kenya says 25 survivors found alive, some in need of treatment, 9 bodies found so far, total number of passengers thought to have been 82.

This report has been filed by a Kenyan blogger Wolf Ganghthome.


2011 was a year tourism stakeholders in Lamu will be swift to forget, considering the two abductions from nearby Kiwayu and Manda Island of foreign visitors and the subsequent near total drop of tourist arrivals.

While the annual Lamu Festival in November brought back some numbers and reassured locals and visitors alike that the Kenyan government had finally taken their own assurances of providing safety and security seriously and beefed up deployment of troops, foreign media and in particular embassies through their travel advisories remained sceptical and careful in opening up the destination once again.

With the New Year Eves fireworks smoke hardly settled however fresh bad news have come in from Lamu, where last night a boat, reportedly carrying as many as 80 people, has sunk.

Many Kenyans had travelled to Lamu for the holiday period, to either visit relatives or else for a vacation and the boat boat, according to a source in Mombasa, was allegedly substantially overloaded as passengers tried to make it back to the mainland to catch their busses home in time to resume work on the 03rd of January, after the 02nd of January was declared a public holiday in Kenya.

The Kenya Red Cross, the country’s primary private sector emergency and disaster response agency, has also confirmed through their Twitter account @KenyaRedCross that at present some 20 passengers have been recovered from the waters alive while at least 9 bodies have been found.

The large number of unaccounted accident victims leaves the question open just how many will have survived by finding a way to shore somewhere in darkness, waiting for daylight to be discovered.

The Kenya Red Cross has in the meantime put up an emergency treatment centre in a tent to be able to attend to anyone found alive when rescue operations resume at 5 a.m. local time to be out at sea searching for survivors and bodies when light breaks in the morning.

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